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2003 chevy trailblazer_lt
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41 Posts
Been doing some off roading in my newly aquired trailblazer and i am unsure of which setting to use when doing a steep hill climb with about an inch covering of snow. I usually use 4lo but ive had trouble where the only tire that spins is the one with the least traction. I need all the other tires to be spinning as well to get me up the hills easier and with less slipping. Any suggestions?
Also here is the link to my most recent off roading escapade with my jeep enthusiast friend. Hope you like it and hope you have some suggestions. THANKS!:D

 

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2007 chevy trailblazer_ss_3ss
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108 Posts
Diddo, some meatier tires and a G80 locker. Plus all you should need is 4 hi and keep it in drive. Also, learn some judgment or reference points to your front end, tires and obsticals. Get a feel for once you loose site of an object and the distance that object is to your front end. That way you can steer around the object while on trails.
 

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Banned
2004 gmc envoy_slt_xuv
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651 Posts
Dont take it to heart Steve. Its just a thing..

Anyways, I see 2 things that will help you emensely, both have been mentioned. See if you can find a 8.6 inch rear from a Long Wheel Base Trailblazer, or Envoy, with a G80 locker. And then get some meatier tires.

Other than that, you were doing it for the most part right. Good throttle control. You didnt stab it when you started to spin. But if you are having a momentum issue when climbing something, and you get stopped with wheel spin, try keeping your momentum up befor you get to that part. That way the root/rock/whatever wont stop you, and your suspension can soak up the bump instead of stopping you.

If that doesnt work, a diferent angle of approach to that your have your weight more centralized on your rear axle.

One other thing, I only saw, and heard that rear wheel spinning. I didnt see the front wheel spinning. Now you have a 4x4, and when its engaged, if a rear wheel spins, so does a front wheel. If one isnt spinning, then you have another issue going on entirely. Front dif spline, or transfer case engagement.

Roadie, and other members, would better be able to help you with both of those. I am still learning the TV myself.
 

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Premium Member
2005 chevy trailblazer_lt_ext
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3,572 Posts
"Wow video's like that give our platform a bad name!"

Thanks man. Thats nice of you, you do realize that i still have a stock trailblazer right?
I did not mean that as a personal attack. I meant that it really shows that without a G80 and with stock tires how inadequate our trucks are at off-roading.
I did see in your profile that you plan on modding more for off-roading.

I agree with tollkeeper that you did several things right. Great throttle control and not just stabbing the gas when you started to spin. You did need some more momentum in some places but your spotter was not helping you out at all.
Were your front tires spinning? Did it feel like they were pulling at all?
 

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Basic Vendor- Skid Plates
2007 chevy trailblazer_ls
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3,700 Posts
OK, so you know your tires suck, and you know you need a locker...

Aside from those, some tips:

1. Momentum
2. left foot braking
3. momentum
4. momentum

All that stuff was easily conquerable at 5mph in 2WD, but you were going 1mph...

Mike
 

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2004 gmc
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26,181 Posts
Spotter? I detected no spotter on that video. :dielaugh: :hopeless :rolleyes:

Good first start. But without a locker, it's essentially a two wheel drive vehicle. One front; one back. Lose traction on any two corners and your forward progress stops. Then careful application of momentum can get you through.

But I have to say I'm impressed you aren't the goofy "hammer down" sort of ******* we see all too often on other platforms.
 

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2003 chevy trailblazer_ls
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1,031 Posts
Get rid of highway tires and get something better suited for where you are at. I have drove similar trails and I am 2WD. I have a G80 and run 265/70-16 A/T tires which are my ony benefit over you. Don't take what the others are telling you as a personal attack, their information is a wealth of knowledge. Remember, everyone started the same as you with a stock vehicle at some point.
 

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chevy
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1,091 Posts
Confidence. You need it.

Get some large bath towels. Fold them up a few times and layer them together. Now find a tree. Have a friend hold them while you ~~SLOWLY~~ bump into the tree with each corner of the vehicle... using the towels to prevent damage to both your truck and the tree. When you come to rest, stop for a second and look at the tree from the driver's seat. See how it looks in relation to you when you're contacting it? Remember what that looks like. Now you have some points of reference.

Use a 3 ton jack and raise the truck onto two wheels from each side (use the frame rail). Get it up in the air pretty good. Now go sit in it. Feels a little weird right? Get used to it. You'll be in that position and worse when off road.

Put your truck in 4Lo and the shifter in 2nd gear. Now you have a good creep speed at idle. Put your left foot on the brake give it some pressure. Now practice slowly overpowering the brakes with the gas so you move forward. This is left foot braking, and it'll help you keep power to both wheels on an open axle. A locking axle is ideal, but this is better than nothing.

Listen to your friend. He wasn't much of a spotter because you really didn't need it for what you were on there. (I found him entertaining :D) You need to keep moving. As people have said, momentum is your friend. 4Lo + 2nd gear will pull you over a lot of small things without the gas pedal.

Practice, practice practice. Get to know your rig and increase your comfort level. That trail was all yours if you would have just driven up it.

Do everything here before you spend $1 on new parts for the truck.
 

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2004 gmc
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26,181 Posts
Excellent advice. To expand on that, I've spent many a time under my supported vehicle, just lying on my back, and staring at the undercarriage, memorizing where the soft spots are and where the hard parts like frame rails are. Having a mental model of the undercarriage is necessary to compare to the rock and tree root field in front of you when you get to more technical trails.
 

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2003 chevy trailblazer_lt
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41 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks for all the help. I am more than surprised that so many people helped me out with this one haha.
As far as mods for my TB I just bought it so im strapped for cash. still paying off the last 500 of the bill.
For future mods I plan on getting the BDS suspension lift kit, 2in wheel spacers all around, 265 general grabbers, brush guard, off roading lights on the brush guard and a bar of 4 on the roof rack.
I have heard of the G80 locker before and looked around at other forums where people have talked about it. Some say that if you push your vehicle too hard when you have one, it breaks. Does anyone have any input on whether the G80 is ok to use on a daily driver/daily off roader?
I really appreciate the advice on spotting and learning the extreme boundaries of my TB, i look forward to making it into an off roading machine!:woohoo:
 

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2004 gmc
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26,181 Posts
I think three of us have broken them. In my case I was extracting a full size van up to its frame in snow, and my 9000 pound winch wasn't enough. So I added about half throttle in 4LO to help out. Ooops.

Most folks who break them are using WAY too much throttle and get the loose tire starting to spin with too much power behind it. Then when the G80 engages, it locks the two sides together, but it has to absorb the energy of the rotating tire all of a sudden. If you've upgraded to 32-33" tires, they weigh double what the OEM wheels do and the G80 is indeed too weak.

Better is to keep a light foot, let the loose tire start to rotate, the locker engages, THEN you can get on the throttle to continue the climb.

Slow and steady is what got me up this extremely lumpy trail - a great demo of what you can do with a G80 that would be impossible otherwise:

 

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2003 chevy trailblazer_lt
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41 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I normally am not the guy who guns it when i slip, so in that relam i think i would be ok. I also don't plan on getting a winch or winching anyone. Would i still be ok with using that as a daily driver? i commute to school twice a week so i just want to make sure that the g80 wont break with regular daily use. Apparently if you drift around a corner by accident or on purpose that can also break it. I am definitely going to add this to my shopping list but want to make sure i can be confident putting it in the TB knowing i won't break it in 2 weeks.
 

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2006
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4,126 Posts
I have 40,000 hard wheeling lifted miles and 130,000 miles overall on my daily driven TB w G80 and I don't have any issues.
 

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Here's how to break your G80. It's unedited and long.

I was second truck in this line. I'd freshly rebuilt my G80 and it did beautifully all day. This was the last trail before we headed back to camp.

Start at 3:50 to see our trail boss for the day climb it. His K5 has a welded 14bolt and 37" boggers. My run starts at about 5:30. Of course I had to try the hard side first. It makes an odd noise at 7:30 (note the "Oh f*" from the girl in my passenger seat :D). Then lets go on the next attempt.




None of those parts listed will fit in the axle in your TB. Short wheel base Trailvoys have an off sized 8" rear axle. When the time comes, you'll need an axle from a TrailBlazer EXT. They are the more standard sized 8.6" ring geared version and there's a lot of locker choices for it.
 

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2005 chevy trailblazer_lt
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2,636 Posts
Looks like I'm late to the party... oh well.

Another thing (that I don't think was mentioned before) that could help you in a stock vehicle with no G80, is to disconnect your sway bars. It will allow your IFS and rear axle to articulate more and contour to the ground much better, thus not lifting your tires as much, and not spinning as much. You'll notice a smoother ride, but more body roll at highway speeds.

Kinda reminds me of my first trail ride, except I had the G80... I remember I was very timid at first, but hey, you gotta start somewhere. At least you haven't destroyed your spider gears yet.

Hopefully you've caught the offroad bug.
 

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Banned
2004 gmc envoy_slt_xuv
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651 Posts
All this talk of G80, and he could already have one (I doubt it).

Check your glove box. On the lid is the RPO Identification labale. It will have a whole bunch of 3 digit codes. One of them COULD be G80. See if you have it, or not. Also check to see if you have the GU6, GT4, or GT5.
 
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